CBD is a compound found in cannabis, and it’s been used for thousands of years. Industrial hemp was made legal through the 2018 Farm Bill, making it possible to produce CBD legally throughout the US. Spas, lounges, online retailers, major pharmacies, physical stores, and even health stores have CBD-infused products on their shelves. 

The CBD market continues to grow rapidly and doesn’t seem to slow down. Unfortunately, there are no testing and labeling laws and no purity, safety, or optimal dosage regulations. 

It is easy to find reputable CBD brands like CBDistillery or Lazarus Naturals, especially when you take necessary precautions. Here is our buyer guide to buying CBD oil.

What to Look for in CBD Oil

While searching for the right CBD oil, remember to look for a few key things. Most reputable CBD-infused products have the following information on product labels:

  • Net weight
  • Amount of active CBD cannabinoids as an ingredient per serving
  • Supplement & ingredients Fact Panel
  • Suggested use
  • Manufacturer or retailer name
  • Isolate, full-spectrum, or broad-spectrum
  • Expiry date or batch code

How to Choose a CBD Product 

How to shop for CBD oil may not be a walk in the park, especially for beginners. To choose quality CBD, keep these tips in mind:

  • Purchase CBD from US-grown hemp:  USDA has set quality-control standards that domestically grown products must meet. 
  • Shop from reputable vendors: Avoid CBD products from smoke shops or gas stations. Instead, go for CBD at licensed medical dispensaries and reputable online stores with positive reviews. 
  •  Select USDA organic CBD products: Some cannabis products may have toxins that can get into your body. Ensure you purchase organic products that are grown without fertilizers and pesticides.
  • Check the COAs: Quality CBD must have a COA from a third-party lab. It helps verify the authenticity of your CBD, its purity, safety, and cannabinoid content.
  • Select the right CBD spectrum for you: For many, broad-spectrum and full-spectrum CBD products serve their needs more than CBD isolates because they manifest an entourage effect, making CBD work better.
  • Make sure the CBD has no additives: Use CBD with 100% organic compounds and no artificial flavors. Additives in vapes may harm your body, leading to EVALI condition. Other additives like coconut oil can cause allergic reactions.
  • Look for quality packaging: CBD oil can stick to plastic packaging, making it less effective, and less of it will get into your body. Don’t buy CBD in aluminum cans, as they have BPA-free lining.

Start with low potency if it’s your first time using CBD oil. While CBD may help you calm down and relax, overdosing may worsen symptoms. We recommend you look for CBD oil with 250 mg of CBD per serving, as it will help see how your body responds. 

Manufacturers indicate CBD oil concentration on the bottles to help determine the product’s potency. You may as well talk to your doctor, as they will show you how to choose a CBD product.

Where to Buy CBD

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) currently doesn’t regulate CBD oil. So, you should do your research before sourcing a product. To get the best extracts, buy CBD that has a COA and is tested by a third-party laboratory. 

Online CBD retailers provide COA reports and laboratory testing results to their customers.

Cannabis lounges and major pharmacies also carry CBD oils. Reputable vendors like these should provide product testing results.

Avoid products at gas stations and random shops, as you may be unable to trace them back quickly. Do not buy from manufacturers or retailers whose customer support is unresponsive, use vague package labels, or are unwilling to provide an ingredient list of their products.

Michael Levin is a CBD enthusiast, a researcher, writer and editor in the cannabis space, experienced CBD user and educator. He believes CBD can help improve our overall health and wellbeing.